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Know the Warning Signs of Neglect
Written By : Jacquelyn Dunn 
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If you are a grandparent who is looking into obtaining grandparents' rights for your grandchildren, there are some things you may need to be aware of so you can create a convincing argument for your ay in court. There are many reasons why grandparents may be looking to petition for custody or grandparents' rights. If there has been a divorce between the parents, and both parties are either not vailable, or suitable to be raising their child, it may be time for a grandparent to check into what they can do to make sure their grandchildren are properly cared for. One factor that may not be obvious at all times is neglect or abuse. Although physical abuse is apparent with scars, bruising or broken bones, emotional abuse may be harder to distinguish.

The following article will cover some of the warning signs of neglect or abuse so you will be able to prepare for the best care your grandchild will need when obtaining grandparents' rights or custody. gnoring what a child needs, leaving them without supervision, or making them feel small or stupid is a form of child abuse. This emotional abuse can cause just as much harm to a child's psychological well being as any physical type may. Since emotional abuse is much more subtle it often goes unrecognized or looked after until the damage has been done. Warning signs of emotional abuse in children are:

• being extremely withdrawn, anxious, or apprehensive about doing something wrong
• showing variances in behavior (extremely agreeable or extremely challenging; extremely compliant or extremely destructive).
• Doesn't show any signs of attachment to the parent or caregiver.
• Acts inappropriately like an adult (for example-takes care of other children) or inappropriately like a baby ( such as rocking back and forth, sucking on a thumb,or setting off in tantrums).

Warning signs of neglect in children grandparents as parents need to be aware of are:

• Clothes do not fit properly, are dirty, or not suitable for the weather.
• Hygiene is typically poor (unwashed, matted and greasy hair, apparent body odor).
• Untreated sicknesses and physical injuries.
• Is regularly left alone or unsupervised or is not discouraged from playing in unsafe situations and environments.
• Is typically tardy or misses school on a routine basis.

Physical abuse is often apparent. If a child seems to have constant bruising and markings on their body other than what could appear to be from a natural child's accident, this is a cause for concern. If the child's behavior seems to be different than an average child. For grandparents looking to obtain their grandparent's rights in court, knowing what to look for between an over-active clumsy child's actions and a child who is being abused is key to being able to defend their grandchilds rights. Warning signs of physical abuse in children are:

• consistent abrasions or unexplained welts, cuts and bruises.
• Is always guarded and "at the ready," as if expecting something bad to happen.
• Afflictions look to have an arrangement such as marks from a hand or belt.
• Shrinks away from touch, jerks at sudden movements, or seems distressed when it's time to go home.
• Wears unsuitable clothing to hide injuries, such as long-sleeved shirts on humid days.

Sexual abuse has been a silent nightmare that many children have had to endure quietly on their own for too many years now. Luckily within the last few years, the awareness has been increased and more measures are being taken to ensure the safety of young children. As grandparents who are trying to assert their grandparents' rights, knowing what to look for with the warning signs of sexual abuse, can save your loved ones a lot of psychological and physical torment. Warning signs for sexual abuse in children are:

• Difficulty walking or sitting.
• Demonstrates familiarity or interest in sexual acts improper for his or her age, or even displays inviting behavior.
• Makes attempts to bypass a specific person, without an obvious reason.
• Avoids changing clothes in front of others or cooperate in physical activities.
• A Sexually Transmitted Disease or getting pregnant, especially under the age of 14.
• Leaves their home to find somewhere else to live.

Part of a grandparents' rights is the ability to know that their grandchildren are safe from harm and well looked after. If there is a concern or warning signs of neglect or abuse, the need to have grandparents as parents to these children becomes an immediate priority. 

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